YouTuber Myka Stauffer and her husband, James Stauffer, announced that they gave their autistic son, Huxley, to a “new mommy” in a “forever home” three years after adopting him from China.
“You guys have been part of this adoption journey even before we picked up Huxley, throughout the whole process. With international adoption, sometimes there are unknowns and things that are not transparent on files and things like that,” James explained in a YouTube video on Tuesday, May 26.
“Once Huxley came home, there were a lot more special needs that we weren’t aware of and that we were not told. So over the past few years, Huxley has been in numerous therapies to try and help him with all of his needs. Over the last year has been the more intense therapy to try and help him as much as possible,” he continued. “For us, it’s been really hard hearing from the medical professionals. A lot of their feedback [has been] really upsetting for us, because it’s not what we ever wanted to hear. We never wanted to be in this position, and we’ve been trying to get his needs met and help him out as much as possible.”
With tears in his eyes, James added, “We truly love him.”
Myka, who was also overcome with emotion, then took over, saying, “There’s not an ounce of our body that doesn’t love Huxley with all of our being. There wasn’t a minute that [we] didn’t try our hardest. And I think what Jim is trying to say is that after multiple assessments, after multiple evaluations, numerous medical professionals have felt that he needed a different fit and that [with] his medical needs, he needed more.”
James explained that the couple waited to share the news with Myka’s YouTube followers because they wanted to protect Huxley’s privacy.
“Do I feel like a failure as a mom? Like, 500 percent,” she said. “So when I get insidious, hurtful comments, it just, like, really makes it hurt worse. It’s not about me at all, but … the last couple of months have been the hardest thing I could’ve ever imagined.”
While the social media influencer — who has four other children with her husband — insisted that Huxley is “thriving” and “happy” after being rehomed, she received backlash from several viewers for her decision. The hashtag “#CancelMykaStauffer” also became a trending topic on Twitter.
“Here’s the thing…those of us with autistic kids? WE HAD NO IDEA WE WERE GOING TO HAVE THEM,” one Twitter user wrote. “We figured it out. We advocated. We learned. We showed up for our kids.”
Another fan tweeted, “Okay but this myka stauffer stuff makes me really sad bc I’ve watched her since before she adopted Huxley and when I watched the video it made absolutely NO sense? Your child was too hard to handle? So you…. gave him back? Like…. a gift receipt. That poor sweet thing.”
A few of Myka’s YouTube subscribers came to her defense, though, with one commenting, “I was adopted at 8 months old, my sister at about 14 months from China. We both had issues of our own coming from another country, my sister a little bit more than me because she was older when she was adopted. I respect you so much for having the courage to make such a heartbreaking and hard decision. You are such great parents, you have to do what’s right for him first and foremost. You are brave and he will thrive in life because of you. Stay strong, you will get through this.” Myka pinned the comment at the top of her vlog.